At least 15 workers were infected with COVID-19 at Fraser Valley Packers Inc., a blueberry packing plant in Abbotsford, health officials announced on Monday. The plant is located at Short Road in Abbotsford.
The investigation into the outbreak started on July 23. Teams from the Fraser Health Authority are working with the plant doing ongoing testing of the workers, said provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry.
Fraser Health first became aware of a potential outbreak after receiving a positive lab test from a plant employee on July 23.
Meanwhile, the BC Blueberry Council assured blueberry lovers that fresh blueberries are safe to eat.
“It has been repeatedly stated from local, provincial and federal health authorities, the government of Canada, and the World Health Organization that there is no evidence linking the transmission of [the] virus to food, and there are currently no reported cases of COVID-19 transmission through food,” says Anju Gill, executive director of the BC Blueberry Council. “BC blueberries are safe to eat.”
Amid the outbreak, farmers are acting very cautiously.
“We are following all the norms of the government to prevent any incidence of COVID. Proper sanitation and other measures are being taken. The fruit is being handled with proper safety,” says Rajinder Singh Lally, owner of Lally Farms in Abbotsford, who also operates a packing plant.
Fraser Valley Packers did not respond to repeated calls for comment.